Child Psychiatrist: Parents Should Lead Conversation About Marijuana With Kids After Legalization In New York

Adult recreational marijuana is now legal across New York. But there are questions and concerns about the law’s impact. Parents, in particular, may be unsure about how to talk to their kids, especially teenagers, about the change. CBS2's Andrea Grymes reports.

Video Transcript

- Recreational marijuana meantime is now legal in New Jersey and New York.

- So how do you talk to kids, especially teenagers, about this big change? CBS 2's Andrea Grymes reports.

DENISE MARGULIES: I've been having it over and over with many kids.

ANDREA GRYMES: Upper East Side mom and athletic trainer, Denise Margulies, says the conversation has been a hot topic this week, talking to her own kids and the one she trains about the new law legalizing recreational marijuana for adults in New York.

DENISE MARGULIES: My advice to say, you know, it's going to get you in a lot of trouble.

ANDREA GRYMES: Child psychiatrist Dr. Jodi Gold says now is the perfect time to talk to young people, teenagers especially, about pot.

JODI GOLD: Did you hear about this on the news? And have a conversation starter with your kids, young teens and older teens, about who's already using marijuana, what it means that it's legal. You want to be really mindful that you keep the dialogue open. Otherwise, your kids are just going to hide it from you.

ANDREA GRYMES: Dr. Gold says in a perfect world, no one under 21 would smoke marijuana. But the truth is, many teens already do. That's why she believes it's important to stress to older teens, don't smoke daily, and only in moderation. She says the new law is a new opportunity to explain marijuana's effects on young brains that are still developing.

JODI GOLD: My biggest take-home message for teenagers on marijuana is, it doesn't make you smarter. It makes it harder for them to remember things, to focus, and to be able to plan, which is exactly what you need to be doing when you're a teenager or a young adult.

ANDREA GRYMES: Another piece of advice for parents from Dr. Gold model the behavior you want your kids to emulate. That's the best way to instill your family's values when it comes to not only pot, but also alcohol and tobacco. Andrea Grymes, CBS 2 News.

- Now Dr. Gold stresses that no teenager should be vaping anything, including marijuana.